October 29, 1899

Fahrlander Family

Siegelau, 29 October 1899

Dear Brother!

We received your dear letter and learned that all of you are well, which is the main thing. One encounters unhappy circumstances again too. Things were not quite right with our hogs this summer, for the hoof and mouth disease was prevalent in our area and for that reason trade was severely restricted and lower and lower prices are paid which makes it pretty bad for us. Many of our own pigs were sick too and died, due to the great heat in August. Otherwise we had good weather all summer long, except for September hay harvest time, when we had two weeks of rain. We brought in six wagon loads. The hay harvest was quite good, however, on the whole. The harvest is good too; only our yield in oats is low. It was too dry for it and too cold at first. The potato yield differed greatly. Wherever it was not too dry the harvest was plentiful. We had all of ours on the summer side.* For that reason it was just average. Up above, close to the house, next to the path through the valley, we had some too. There the potato yield was terrible. It was a strange kind; “Blue Giants”, they were called.
Towards the end of September we had military units quartered at our place. They belonged to the Kurmärkish Dragoon. We had three soldiers and three horses stationed with us, mostly Prussians, Silesians and people from Westphalia. The horses were stabled but we had them for two days.
We also bought a church clock now. It has been in the railway station at Freiburg but it is still quite good. It cost about 300 marks.** The money was collected.
I learned recently that Peter Wilhelm would like to come to Germany, his health permitting. Well, if he is that poorly off, I doubt that he will tolerate the journey well.
The inheritance of old Mr. Schmidt has been torn into many parts. The “old man of wisdom” did not even have a last will, therefore his property, which amounts to about 28,000 marks, will go to other places mostly. Each one of the Magenmullers will inherit, Joseph, Vitus and Rosa, as far as I know, each 1100 marks. Everything else which is the greater part goes to Niederwinden, Simonswald and Bleibach.
Well, how is Benedict doing? Does he still live close to you? He will probably have found himself an American girl too, soon.
A start will be made for building the railway to Elzach soon. The contracts are let as far as I know, so that work can start within the next few weeks. This construction however will not be of any particular value to us since the line is running too high up. In general, the entire line stays rather high and close to the top of the range on the east side, probably because of the damage of high water and because of the breakthrough required later, leading into the Kinzig Valley. The acreage was bought up for the tracks.
A regiment of artillery was stationed this fall in Freiburg, too.
Ulrich Schreiner has married too. His wife is Berbel, daughter of Abelone. She is however almost too young for him, being almost 20 years younger than he. He will do all right and he is improving himself.
I do not have any additional news items. Thank God everyone is well in our family here. Little Joseph is healed up well again since he was caught under a wagon.*** Our family has again increased by a girl.****
Well, I want to conclude now. Therefore best regards to all of you. Let us hope that the old century will come to a good end and that the new one will have a good beginning. Thus my best wishes from your brother,

Franz Anton

This fall we have very good weather

*Meaning the sunny side of the valley.
**Again referring to the Arms of Krupp (Manchester), where he states that in 1883, 750 marks equaled $561.00, if the value was the same in 1899, the clock would have cost about $225.00.
*** Joseph, born July 24, 1895, would have been four years old.
**** Berta, born June 9, 1899.



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